There is a fundamental difference between the worth of an election and voting. People make this mistake all the time, most notably with some version of the phrase, “This presidential election is really important, so make sure you get out and vote because every vote matters.” This is the wrong way to look at it. Elections are indeed very important, or at least have the potential to be, but an individual’s vote in that election is staggeringly inconsequential.
The electoral college only furthers the pointlessness of voting for president, since certain states (Ohio) may ultimately play a larger role in deciding the election than others (North Dakota), which does indeed shake the odds that an individual’s vote will matter, but also further illustrates the pointlessness of casting a ballot. Taken as a percentage of the whole, a single vote for president is somewhere in the 1 in a 115 million range of deciding the election. In a particular state, however, that number might potentially decrease to perhaps 1 in 12 million. Better odds, to be sure, but one might as well go out and buy a lottery ticket for all the good their vote will do.